By the time we reach university a surprising number of us are convinced that we should know all we need to know about researching and writing essays. We’re inclined to argue that if we’ve got this far we should know how to analyse the implications of questions, read efficiently, take notes, plan and structure arguments, use evidence, and write light and interesting prose. Indeed these skills are the very thing that has got us this far in the first place, so to admit that we could be better at essay writing seems to be an admission that we’re lucky to have got this far
Learning the skills
In this book you will learn not just the study skills, but the thinking skills too. What’s more, you won’t do this alone. At every step of the ix way a tutor will be by your side, showing you clear and simple ways of overcoming the most difficult problems. And you choose the essay you want to work on, drawn from the courses you’re taking at your school, college or university.
It’s an integrated approach
It doesn’t deal with writing skills in isolation from the thinking skills and the other study skills involved, like note-taking, reading and organisation. If you’ve taken study-skills courses before, you’ll know that dealing with any skill in isolation results in us just tacking on this new skill to our existing pattern of study. It’s not integrated within it. As a result, after a short time we come to realise it’s not relevant to the way we use our other skills and we quietly abandon it.
It’s a purposeful approach
Because it’s directed at a specific goal of producing a certain essay that you have chosen yourself, it has a clear purpose that’s relevant to what you’re studying. Unlike more general books and courses, you’re not working in a vacuum. In effect you have your own personal writing tutor, who will be by your side to help you with the problems you confront at each stage in the production of an essay that you have to complete for one of your courses.
The book takes account of the syllabus objectives of your courses
Unlike most books on this subject, this one will help you develop the skills you need to meet the syllabus objectives of the courses you’re taking at school, college or university. You will develop the skills and techniques that allow you to explore more effectively in your writing those abilities your syllabuses set out to develop.
The book is a comprehensive essay writing guide
After you’ve read the book and completed the course you’re left with an invaluable guide that you can use to diagnose and deal with any problem you might have in your writing in the future. As it’s broken up into stages it’s easy to identify where the problem is and what you need to do to tackle it. To help you in this, the index can be used to diagnose a problem you might be experiencing, so that you can easily locate the relevant section of the guide.